A horrible hack

Orpan Choir - the Amistad


Year Released: 2008
Format: 7"
Label: Records Or It Didn't Happen - Document Records
Reviewed by Andy Malcolm on Apr 5, 2008
Recent surveys have shown there is at least 1 gruff punk per square mile of the world, even the oceans! That is a lot of gruff punk bands. I started off this split by listening to Orphan Choir, who are Canadian. Canada has recently made non-gruff bands illegal, so this is Orphan Choir's attempt to stay on the right side of the law. "Groundbreaking Ceremony" is a pleasing rocker, bearded guys bashing instruments bassily, and coughing gruff all over it. It is all wholly reminiscent of Small Brown Bike's "Our Own Wars" and seeing as that is the only good full length record by that band, I am not really complaining. I haven't really heard a band do a take on that specific branch of gruff for some time, so it pleasing to hear a band sound like that, rather than Dillinger 4. The second song is acoustic, I have no time for acoustic punk, so I gave up on that one.

The Amistad are Brits, and they are solid, gruff melodic punk with a British leaning. It's a poppier Hooton 3 Car type thing, I particularly like the slowed down bits they slip in from time to time, and then they surge off. They name drop the Broadways, which gives you plentiful hints too. I hope they will lean more on the British influences in the future, because I want to hear more bands that take direction from Hooton and Broccoli, please. The second song has an exceedingly long title, and the intro is straight out of the UK school. Sweet. I rather like their lyrics, bitter and pleasingly wry in places.

Solid split, I wouldn't say no to an LP by either of these bands, and I reckon that the Amistad in particular will either crank out several fine records or just split up tomorrow, that's the way it goes.

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